Take yesterday’s reminder (yet again) that the purpose of life is simply to wake up, to be ever more mindful of our choices.
I and my traveling companion had been driving for more than six hours, returning to our Vermont nest from a business trip. About an hour from home, just off the ferry crossing lake Champlain from New York, dusk begins to settle in. I turn on the headlights. As darkness deepens I notice that the road ahead isn’t being well lit as it normally is. The headlights were working, I could tell, but they just weren’t as bright as usual.
Of course, all day the roads had been wet from persistent showers, the spray of countless vehicles maintaining a steady veneer of road grime, our windshield washer getting its exercise.
Maybe the headlights were simply unable to see through the grunge.
Or maybe a lamp had blown.
Either way, stopping to find out and do something about it was about as appealing as a pork rind milkshake. I was tired.
George Carlin said that rationalization is more important than sex. Have you ever gone a day without a good rationalization? he asked. Despite the growing night around me, my headlights operating almost as if blindfolded, I was sure I could make it home before things got risky.
Fortunately, the last couple of miles are up a sparsely traveled road. And about half way up that road, minutes from home, the universe finally pokes me with the realization of why my way has appeared so dimly lit all this time.
I’m still wearing my sunglasses.
I share this story with my companion.
A family of deer may not have been the only ones to turn their heads in wonder as a car full of laughter passed by.